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CHAVIT SINGSON : True, the Franchise (Miss Universe PH) is already with Me

"Miss Universe Philippines franchise already with me", Chavit Singson said in an interview by Wilson Flores by Philippine Star published Sunday, January 13, 2019.

Here's a part of an interview of Wilson Flores of Philippine Star with Former Ilocos Sur Governor and LCS Group President Chavit Singson. 

Philippine STAR: There have been rumors that you’re negotiating with the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) to acquire the Philippine franchise of the pageant from Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BPCI), but Stella Marquez-Araneta just told media on Jan. 3 that the franchise is still with them. What’s the real score?

CHAVIT SINGSON: True, the franchise is already with me, but it has not yet been announced. I think it shall be formally announced this January or February, when Catriona comes back again to the Philippines. “Binibining Pilipinas Universe” will be replaced with “Miss Universe Philippines.” Noon pa binibigay sa akin ‘yan (It was being offered to me since before), because I’ve been helping them since 2016.

How did you get it when the Miss Universe franchise has been with the Aranetas for 55 years?

I dealt with them for the hosting of the Miss Universe pageant here in the Philippines in 2016. Instead of talking to many companies before, they just talked to me and I then gave them a non-refundable deposit of $1 million. Who would disagree to that, non-refundable? I gained their trust. Before the signing in 2016, they even first asked me to pay $12 million.

Are you trying to copy the controversial Donald Trump, who once owned Miss Universe before he sold it in 2015?

No, we’re different. My girlfriends are more beautiful! (Laughs)

Is it true you’re helping stage Miss Universe this year? Where in South Korea will it be, and can you share some details?

Yes, it’s in South Korea, but I’m not yet sure exactly where. Before, it was held in Jeju island because it doesn’t require visas for foreign tourists. The 2019 Miss Universe will be unique because for the first time in history, North Korea will participate but no swimsuit portion for their candidate, only the national costume.

Are you courting Catriona Gray, because the first Instagram and Facebook photos I saw of you and her, the two of you were dining and having wine on your private jet. Your comments about her?

Hindi, hindi (No, no), I’m not courting her. Catriona deserves the crown, she’s very confident, intelligent, beautiful. Walang masabi (nothing to say), she really deserves to win.

What did you tell Catriona after she won? How about President Duterte’s reaction to her?

I told her that her life will change and she said that she still couldn’t believe it… President Duterte? Natuwa siya, gusto nga niya i-appoint siya (he’s delighted, in fact he wants to appoint her) somewhere.

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